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March 30, 2018


Professor Kennedy’s blog today had to do with religion and abortion and asked for commentary. Following, slightly edited, was my submission.

The bible is not a set of rules; it is the history of a society and the rules they happened to have to deal with their then current problems. We can read their history, adopt or decline to adopt or modify their rules, and like they did, make our own rules to fit today’s realities. For instance, the “Be fruitful and multiply” order from on high does not make sense in today’s world where continents are overflowing with humanity creating their own stress on our natural environment. We also have longer lifespans now what with antibiotics and preventive medicines, which increase the stress longer lives level on our natural environment.
Thus health codes found their way into moral codes as Jews and Muslims refused to eat pork (trichinosis exposure), drank wine (to escape the filthy water), etc. We, in my opinion, are not bound to such ancient strictures based on their problems then which are not present today, and I am reminded in such connection with a statement Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.  once made in an opinion > “The reason for the rule has long since evaporated, but the rule persists.” We need to bring our abortion rules (among others) up to date based on current realities, not the realities King David and medieval monks faced in their day or the laggards of today since “the reason for the rule has long since evaporated, but the rule persists” thinking on abortion should be decided by women in year 2018, not 381 A.D. ( the year the bible was codified). Things have changed.    GERALD      E

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